Rotherham United’s decision to reject Derby County’s advances for striker Freddie Ladapo has been justified following his contribution in the 2-1 win at Sheffield Wednesday.
The Rams strengthened their squad on deadline day with five new arrivals.
George Edmundson, Teden Mengi, Patrick Roberts, Beni Baningime and Lee Gregory all moved to Derby on loan and have since made their first-team debuts.
But one player the Rams reportedly missed out on was Rotherham’s Freddie Ladapo.
Millers boss Paul Warne told the Yorkshire Post how Derby were keen on a deal for the striker, but their advances were turned down by the head of recruitment.
Warne later commented Derby could revisit a deal this summer.
“I didn’t get told there was interest in Freddie until after the window was shut. I think it went to the head of recruitment. It will probably be some we revisit in the summer. If Derby come knocking and it is something Freddie wants to do, it is not something I want to do. (But) I have said before with all of my players, once they don’t want to be here, then I am responsible for their lives and happiness. There is no shame on Freddie’s agent contacting us over a potential move. But at this moment in time it doesn’t suit either party,” Warne explained.
Rotherham would have been mad to allow their striker to join a direct relegation rival, and their decision to block Derby’s approach was justified at Hillsborough on Wednesday.
The Millers faced Yorkshire rivals Wednesday in a huge encounter at the bottom.
The Owls knew a victory over Rotherham would see them leapfrog their close rivals. And they pushed hard for all three points as the Millers went down to ten men.
Rotherham were holding on for a point when in the final minute of the game, a poor Owls corner allowed Paul Warne’s side to break and Ladapo fired in a stunning 25-yard winner.
The victory sees the Millers move four points clear of the Owls, and within three points of Birmingham City and Coventry City while having played two games less.
Derby are a further three points ahead on 38 points. Despite missing out on Ladapo, fellow loan striker signing Lee Gregory has made a positive impact for the Rams.